Showing posts from May, 2020

Spring in Riga

With the long warmer days here, the flowers have brought beauty to the parks near us. I'll share this postcard with you of the Riga spring flowers.

Our days are getting very long since we're so far north. The sun rises before 5:00 now and sets at 9:45 at night. By June 21, the sun will be up from 4:30 AM to 10:22 PM. Lots of time to party!

Between Old Riga and the rest of the city, a canal runs through a beautiful park. We were told that the canal is actually where the old moat surrounded the walled city.

It's lovely to stroll along the canal through the beautiful park. It's one of our favorite walks.

The park is dotted with statues and fountains.

We are looking forward to seeing what summer flowers will be added to the collection when they open up. By then we'll be able to go for a walk at 10:00 at night and still see the sunshine. I can't wait!

Ye Olde City Wall

Sections of the original walls of Old Riga can be seen in different areas yet today. In the picture at the left you can see that the 1.5 meter thick walls were quite tall with a covered walkway on the top for the people who defended the city. Of course, this section of the wall was reconstructed after many years of use, but some of the stones are original.

Riga was started around 1200 with the beginning fortifications built within a hundred years. Through the years, the walls were expanded or reinforced to keep the city safe from invaders. By the beginning of the 19th century, the walls were no longer necessary because of modern armaments, but sections still remain in the city today.

On a walk through Old Riga, you will be able to discover the different pieces of the remaining wall found in the city.

Besides the section shown above, the largest section of the wall includes the Powder Tower, originally built in 1330 and destroyed in 1621. It is the last remaining tower of the wall in …

The Legend of Lielais Kristaps

Riga has another statue that is located only a block from our flat. It's called the Big Christopher (Lielais Kristaps in Latvian) statue.

The interesting thing about this statue is the story behind it. According to the legend, a kind-hearted giant, originally named Offero, lived near the Daugava River. He would carry people across the wide river on his shoulder if they needed to get to the other side.

One day a small boy asked Offero to carry him across the raging river. He sat on the giant's shoulder as he walked through the river, but the farther the giant walked, the heavier the child became. After struggling, the man finally reached the opposite shore.

The boy then explained that he was the Christ and the burden the giant carried was the sins of the world. He then baptized the giant and renamed him "Christopher" because that means Christ-bearer. After Christopher returned home, he found a pile of gold waiting for him. He used the gold to build the original city…